The dead are walking, and something even worse stalks the land in human form. What rough beast slouches towards Dodge City? Your Major Spoilers review of The Sixth Gun: Days Of The Dead #2 awaits!
Previously in The Sixth Gun: Days Of The Dead: “The Knights of Solomon have long coveted artifacts of ancient power, and – working under the guise of the Pinkerton Detective Agency – they will do anything to possess such objects. The priests of the Sword of Abraham have dedicated themselves to protecting such items, going so far as destroying them so they do not fall into the wrong hands. Jesup Sutter is a young, ambitious agent of the Knights of Solomon. Roberto Vargas is a rebellious priest of the Sword of Abraham. Their destinies are entwined with that of the Sixth Gun, but this is the tale of how they became the men thy would one day be – One fueled by faith… And the other fueled by bitter hatred.”.
DEAD CAN DANCE
At the end of last issue, Brother Vargas had used forbidden magics to resurrect his dead father, only to get back-stabbed by the necromancer he paid and left at the mercy of a horde of undead folk. While the young priest fights his way through a wall of zombies, not far away actress Abigail Redmayne receives a message of her own about the whereabouts of a mysterious artifact known as The Vessel of Yum Kimil (also related to Vargas’ quest). A little of the old fighty-fighty breaks out, and I have to say that I liked the art, especially as the battle continued. Abigail and her young ward (a girl who seems all of ten years old) pulling out massive shootin’ irons and mowing down cannon fodder is a wonderful image, and the climax of the fight, wherein Jesup Sutter makes a lovely shot with a hatchet, makes for a very striking end. With all our players on stage, I’m expecting a big team-up in future issues, but since this IS a prequel to that which came before, we already know that it all goes pear-shaped in the end.
OLD FRIENDS REUNITED
As always, though, I’m a sucker for romance, and the big damn kiss that Jesup and Abigail close the issue with is a nice moment as well, and the three page build-up to it makes the final liplock extremely satisfying. Cullen Bunn’s plot is interesting on all fronts (especially the bits where Vargas worries that his own order will kill him when they discover the black magic he used to resurrect dear ol’ dad, now a disembodied skull in his saddlebag), and the art is uniformly excellent, if not 100% period appropriate to the timeframe in which the book takes place. Mashups of genre are commonplace these days, and there are even a few cowboy/supernatural tales on the market, but The Sixth Gun is always one of the most complex and well-crafted of them of the bunch. Add in some nicely subtle coloring, and Oni Press has a rock-solid bit of entertainment on their hands…
THE BOTTOM LINE: COMPLEX AND ARCANE
We covered the first volume of ‘The Sixth Gun’ in a previous Major Spoilers Podcast, and I’ve been keeping up with it periodically since that time, and I have to say, it’s a damn fine comic book, and one that fans of drama with overtones of mystical mumbo-jumbo should give a chance. The Sixth Gun: Days Of The Dead #2 has a group of cool characters doing cool things involving zombies and bullets and the like, as well as a pretty awesome kiss at the end, earning a well-deserved 3.5 out of 5 stars overall. There are a lot of places this story could end up going, and I’m excited to follow it to it’s (probably depressing) conclusion…